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  1. #1
    Molon Lifting taf1968's Avatar
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    How much sodium is too much?

    I've been making a push to get things really ramped up again and make some progress for summer (kids will want to go to the pool sooner than I want to think about).

    One of the things that struck me was how much sodium was in the foods that I was eating more of. In particular, I've been eating quite a bit of lowfat cottage cheese and canned chicken/tuna. A cup of cottage cheese has around 900mg sodium, a big "Costco-sized" can of chicken that I can eat in one sitting has around 1000mg sodium, and even a regular sized can of tuna has around 360mg sodium. I know that fresh is better on the chicken and fish so I do try to prepare food ahead of time when I can--the cans are just extremely convenient since I can have a supply at work and whip up a quick lunch or snack.

    So my question is, what's everyone's thoughts on how much sodium is too much?


    Note: I don't have blood pressure issues (I'm actually on the pretty low side) and I tend to drink a ton of water.
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  2. #2
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    I tracked my sodium and was sitting at around 3,000 per day. I use a lot of canned tuna and veggies as well. I don't think it matters unless a. you have blood pressure issues or b. are going to manipulate the water in your body for a contest.
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  3. #3
    Registered User Fadi65's Avatar
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    It's not so much about how much is too much as it is about balance. As long as all your electrolytes are in balance with one another, then you'll be fine.

    Having said that, if we dig just a bit deeper, we find that a high sodium diet, by raising urinary sodium and calcium excretion, may accelerate bone loss in adults. It all comes back to this balance between the electrolytes I mentioned above. Sure you don't have high blood pressure (and I hope you never will), but osteoporosis and a bone fracture would be just around the corner if you were to maintain such an assault on your body's homeostasis.

    Ah, I just re read your post and you say that you "use a lot of canned tuna" as well. Now to an observer like me, that seems like a double whammy on your skeleton system. One is sodium which we've covered, and now we've got high animal protein. That in itself causes a high acidic environment which needs to be brought back down to a balanced pH level. The body does that by leaching calcium (an acid buffer) from your precious bones just to keep that balance (homeostasis) in check.


    PS: Okay, so is it all doom and gloom from Fadi? No, not at all. Why not get stuck into some much needed heavy duty vegetable juices. You've got the alkaline water there with a ton of minerals (including calcium) to quench your thirst, detoxify your blood, and make you feel vibrant all over as if you’ve been given a multi vitamin and mineral injection!

    Cheers,

    Fadi.
    Last edited by Fadi65; 02-20-2010 at 10:06 AM.
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  4. #4
    Tango Romeo timross13's Avatar
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    Well, I do have high blood pressure, and it does suck like you wouldn't believe. I am on medication which lowers my heart rate. Lowers it like 20 minutes on an eliptical at 7-8mph and my heart rate only gets to 110-115 beats per minute.

    My doctor wants me to keep my sodium to less then 2,000 mg per day.
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  5. #5
    Registered User Fadi65's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by timross13 View Post
    Well, I do have high blood pressure, and it does suck like you wouldn't believe. I am on medication which lowers my heart rate. Lowers it like 20 minutes on an eliptical at 7-8mph and my heart rate only gets to 110-115 beats per minute.

    My doctor wants me to keep my sodium to less then 2,000 mg per day.
    Hi Tim,

    I would not take blood pressure medication Sir; there is an alternative you know. I had blood pressure once (160/105) and that was enough to for me to look for something natural that is guaranteed to work. No don't worry, I'm not some sort of salesman or anything of a kind, but I know the side effects too well to keep quite.

    Your doctor, does he/she have an open mind or are they totally bought by the drug companies?!


    Fadi.
    Last edited by Fadi65; 02-20-2010 at 10:19 PM. Reason: Changed 105/160 to 160/105!
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  6. #6
    Tango Romeo timross13's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Fadi65 View Post
    Hi Tim,

    I would not take blood pressure medication Sir; there is an alternative you know. I had blood pressure once (105/160) and that was enough to for me to look for something natural that is guaranteed to work. No don't worry, I'm not some sort of salesman or anything of a kind, but I know the side effects too well to keep quite.

    Your doctor, does he/she have an open mind or are they totally bought by the drug companies?!


    Fadi.
    I have no idea if he has an open mind or not. I know right now, I will listen to just about anything. But before I get into this, I must warn you that my blood pressure was REALLY high 4 years ago. It was 225/160. It is now down to 155-160/90. Still high, but it is finally coming down. To control blood pressure, it is basically a cocktail that the doctor has to figure out. What works for some will not work for others. I have switched medications 4-5 times in the past 4 years, and I had a reaction to one last year.
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  7. #7
    Registered User Fadi65's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by timross13 View Post
    I have no idea if he has an open mind or not. I know right now, I will listen to just about anything. But before I get into this, I must warn you that my blood pressure was REALLY high 4 years ago. It was 225/160. It is now down to 155-160/90. Still high, but it is finally coming down. To control blood pressure, it is basically a cocktail that the doctor has to figure out. What works for some will not work for others. I have switched medications 4-5 times in the past 4 years, and I had a reaction to one last year.
    I hear you loud and clear Tim, I really do mate. The tablets I'd be suggesting to you hit at the cause of the problem rather than put a bandaid over it, as blood pressure medications do.

    I'll give you a hint so you can do bit of research yourself before I give the info away. Please look at Indian herbs for blood pressure and tell me what you find. It's always better when you discover something yourself, so go for it mate...


    Fadi
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  8. #8
    1st Dan Chito-Ryu tonester's Avatar
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    I believe the accepted norm is 2400mg.
    "Adapt and overcome."

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  9. #9
    Registered User mavrick77's Avatar
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    Sodium has been blamed for many health problems, but untill I have them, I don't believe it as long as you keep your potasium high as well to balance it out...

    nobody ever talks bout benefits of sodium, such as allowing your muscles to store more carbs for energy, then without it....

    only time i watch sodium is when cutting water.
    I do not sugar coat things, but you got in the condition you're in by "sugar coating."
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  10. #10
    Registered User Fadi65's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by mavrick77 View Post
    Sodium has been blamed for many health problems, but untill I have them, I don't believe it as long as you keep your potasium high as well to balance it out...

    nobody ever talks bout benefits of sodium, such as allowing your muscles to store more carbs for energy, then without it....

    only time i watch sodium is when cutting water.
    Okay Mavrick, here's something for you that is not just good about sodium, but rather essential...

    Ok, some of you may want to shoot me down after this because nothing I will say here is going to sound politically correct. Big deal, let’s go…

    I’m going to give you a quick fix that has nothing exotic written on it, no NO and no Xplosions this or Bomb that sorry, this is simple (yet far from being simplistic), and basic (because there’s no law that says it has to be sophisticated for it to work)!

    Sea salt and lemon juice! It’s not rocket science I know, but I grew up on it in my country of origin. Salt you say? Isn’t that the devil that gives you high blood pressure and all the other nasties? You tell me. Lemon juice? Well it makes the water with the salt feel just balanced out (without getting into the benefit of lemon juice here).

    Mix ¼ teaspoon of good sea salt with the juice of half a lemon added to 250ml of water. Take that half way through your workout when your killer hormones are just about getting ready to pounce and drag you and your workout down into fatigue land.

    Now the way I see it is like this: Aldosterone is an adrenal gland released hormone. When the adrenal glands are not functioning at an optimal level due to been constantly "stressed", then a drop occurs in the sodium/potassium regulating hormone Aldosterone. When that occurs, you can wave goodbye to your sodium. But there's more. Sodium does not like to leave by itself since it gets very lonely that way and insists on dragging some much needed water out with it!

    Now we've come to something called dehydration as well as sodium deficiency! Really? I told you I won't be politically correct here. We are usually told to drink water and/or have a banana, which is full of that wonderful mineral potassium. Nothing could be worst I say. Why I hear you ask? It's because by doing so, you'd only be rubbing salt into the wound (I wish and no pun intended by the way). The initial problem is low sodium and water. By adding water (without sodium), you might as well be pouring water into a bucket with a hole in it. And to add potassium when sodium is what is needed would only serve to keep the sodium and potassium ratio out of whack even further…prolonging our fatigue and the mean of recovering from it.

    And who says salt is bad when bad is just a relative term I find!


    Fadi.
    Last edited by Fadi65; 02-21-2010 at 06:34 AM.
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  11. #11
    Registered User mavrick77's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Fadi65 View Post
    Okay Mavrick, here's something for you that is not just good about sodium, but rather essential...

    Ok, some of you may want to shoot me down after this because nothing I will say here is going to sound politically correct. Big deal, let’s go…

    I’m going to give you a quick fix that has nothing exotic written on it, no NO and no Xplosions this or Bomb that sorry, this is simple (yet far from being simplistic), and basic (because there’s no law that says it has to be sophisticated for it to work)!

    Sea salt and lemon juice! It’s not rocket science I know, but I grew up on it in my country of origin. Salt you say? Isn’t that the devil that gives you high blood pressure and all the other nasties? You tell me. Lemon juice? Well it makes the water with the salt feel just balanced out (without getting into the benefit of lemon juice here).

    Mix ¼ teaspoon of good sea salt with the juice of half a lemon added to 250ml of water. Take that half way through your workout when your killer hormones are just about getting ready to pounce and drag you and your workout down into fatigue land.

    Now the way I see it is like this: Aldosterone is an adrenal gland released hormone. When the adrenal glands are not functioning at an optimal level due to been constantly "stressed", then a drop occurs in the sodium/potassium regulating hormone Aldosterone. When that occurs, you can wave goodbye to your sodium. But there's more. Sodium does not like to leave by itself since it gets very lonely that way and insists on dragging some much needed water out with it!

    Now we've come to something called dehydration as well as sodium deficiency! Really? I told you I won't be politically correct here. We are usually told to drink water and/or have a banana, which is full of that wonderful mineral potassium. Nothing could be worst I say. Why I hear you ask? It's because by doing so, you'd only be rubbing salt into the wound (I wish and no pun intended by the way). The initial problem is low sodium and water. By adding water (without sodium), you might as well be pouring water into a bucket with a hole in it. And to add potassium when sodium is what is needed would only serve to keep the sodium and potassium ratio out of whack even further…prolonging our fatigue and the mean of recovering from it.

    And who says salt is bad when bad is just a relative term I find!


    Fadi.
    NICE...another sodium lover!!!!! we need to start a support group and stop being looked down on LOL
    I do not sugar coat things, but you got in the condition you're in by "sugar coating."
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  12. #12
    I dun hab drain bramage! AKMass's Avatar
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    I've known for decades now the whole "sodium is bad" thing has been overblown. Kind of along the lines of "eggs are bad."
    Back into the green. Thank you all that helped. :)

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  13. #13
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    The 2400 mg per day thing is considered the norm.

    Of course you dont want too little but no reason to have too much. it will certainly make you retain water.

    not really a bad thing but if you are trying to lose weight then it can be frustrating.

    If you have a decent dient with real foods like meat, chicken, veggies, etc then you really dont need to worry about it too much. It will naturally be good.

    If you eat alot of processed foods they normally have tons of sodium and can trip you up.

    You can easily double or triple your daily needs with processed foods.

    Look at a can of soup in your cupboard and see how much is in there. Its pretty interesting.
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    I wonder about this too. I mean, I could care less about the healthy side of things (high-blood pressure or bone calcium whatever) at this point because I know that I'm fine on those things and not totally overdoing sodium. (Not saying I don't care about it as a concept and broad health issue, etc...just not my current concern).

    But since the wife and I are both working hard to bring out the abs, so to speak, I worry about it in those terms. I'm cool with eating my food without salt in spite of the fact that I don't like it as well. But my wife loves salt on her food and I'm always giving her a bad time about it. I don't want to be giving her a bad time about something that isn't going to make any difference. Is salting the chicken breast going to make the difference between getting that six pack or not? That's my concern.
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    Originally Posted by folkprophet View Post
    I wonder about this too. I mean, I could care less about the healthy side of things (high-blood pressure or bone calcium whatever) at this point because I know that I'm fine on those things and not totally overdoing sodium. (Not saying I don't care about it as a concept and broad health issue, etc...just not my current concern).

    But since the wife and I are both working hard to bring out the abs, so to speak, I worry about it in those terms. I'm cool with eating my food without salt in spite of the fact that I don't like it as well. But my wife loves salt on her food and I'm always giving her a bad time about it. I don't want to be giving her a bad time about something that isn't going to make any difference. Is salting the chicken breast going to make the difference between getting that six pack or not? That's my concern.
    Six pack or whatever pack you fancy is not sodium dependant but rather caloric intake and expenditure dependant, period!

    To use your logic, I would have to give up on carbohydrates as well since we're talking water here and not fat. And since one gram of carbs holds on to about 3 grams of water, then why not give up the carbs whilst you're at it?!

    No, that is not the way it works. Sodium, (excess sodium) in the absence of water may have your body hold onto some excess water (under the skin) but it's all very temporary; and unlike fat which is the real culprit as far as your six packs is concerned, would be balanced out as soon as your water intake is adequate.

    To insure some killer six pack, all you have to do is insure your metabolism is revving into high gear whilst eating sensibly and in a balanced way.


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    Registered User vmpolesov's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Fadi65 View Post
    Mix ¼ teaspoon of good sea salt with the juice of half a lemon added to 250ml of water. Take that half way through your workout when your killer hormones are just about getting ready to pounce and drag you and your workout down into fatigue land.
    This is interesting. In some of my cardio workouts (usually 90 minutes) I can get cramps (usually in the calf, but sometimes in the quads) towards the end. I have been trying to stave them off by having a banana beforehand. Maybe I'll try a bit of this salt-and-lemon and see how it works for me.
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    Registered User tomperez1971's Avatar
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    thanks for all the advice on this matter. i like, ok...LOVE salt but i have been watching how much a little better then i used to. i'll give that mix a try as well.

    i have no high blood pressure probs.
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    Originally Posted by vmpolesov View Post
    This is interesting. In some of my cardio workouts (usually 90 minutes) I can get cramps (usually in the calf, but sometimes in the quads) towards the end. I have been trying to stave them off by having a banana beforehand. Maybe I'll try a bit of this salt-and-lemon and see how it works for me.
    A sure way of stopping/preventing cramps dead in their tracks is to take K-Mag. That is potassium and magnesium aspartate. Take it 30 minutes before your workout and you can kiss your cramps goodbye!

    http://www.iherb.com/Source-Naturals...lets/1372?at=0


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    Originally Posted by crupiea View Post
    The 2400 mg per day thing is considered the norm.

    Of course you dont want too little but no reason to have too much. it will certainly make you retain water.

    not really a bad thing but if you are trying to lose weight then it can be frustrating.

    If you have a decent dient with real foods like meat, chicken, veggies, etc then you really dont need to worry about it too much. It will naturally be good.

    If you eat alot of processed foods they normally have tons of sodium and can trip you up.

    You can easily double or triple your daily needs with processed foods.

    Look at a can of soup in your cupboard and see how much is in there. Its pretty interesting.
    If 2400mg is the norm then im ****ed, I have maybe 5000mg or more. I eat corned beef for a lot of my meat because its cheaper than chicken or turkey
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    Originally Posted by clogga View Post
    If 2400mg is the norm then im ****ed, I have maybe 5000mg or more. I eat corned beef for a lot of my meat because its cheaper than chicken or turkey
    Strong bump. There's no "number" really. Sodium for me is symptomatic. The more active I am the more I need.
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    I try to use some common sense; if my food tastes too salty, then it's "too much." If it tastes just right, then so is the sodium content.


    If you have healthy kidney function, are careful to take in adequate potassium-rich foods every day, and keep yourself adequately hydrated, your body is perfectly capable of regulating sodium (and potassium) all on it's own.
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    Originally Posted by ironwill2008 View Post
    I try to use some common sense; if my food tastes too salty, then it's "too much." If it tastes just right, then so is the sodium content.


    If you have healthy kidney function, are careful to take in adequate potassium-rich foods every day, and keep yourself adequately hydrated, your body is perfectly capable of regulating sodium (and potassium) all on it's own.
    Yep - it isn't a one size fits all world when it comes to your body.
    Doh!
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    Just a warning regarding canned tuna, don't consume it on a regular basis. Tuna contains mercury and can lead to mercury poisoning, I know from first hand experience. I was consuming about 2 cans a day, bc it is a cheap and quick form of protein, unfortunately I was unaware of the mercury problem. Not saying that your consuming that much tuna, I think it's not recommend to eat more than 2 cans a week or look for fresh water fish since they aren't exposed to the mercury problem.
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